Once in the mountains the walking and scenery is much more pleasant. There is a decent little shop in Lescun where I was able to stock up on food for the days ahead so once I left Lescun any supply problems that had been on my mind had now been resolved. Water was suddenly plentiful and the high route became hugely enjoyable.
The best wildcamp was at Lac du Peyreget, I stopped here late afternoon, I had been heading for Refuge de Pombie which allows camping outside but Lac du Peyreget was captivating so I stopped earlier than planned.
I was glad I did, the following morning I was about an hour from Pombie, as I crossed the col I could see it in the distance - and a sea of tents all around. The two toilets between so many people were begining to grumble and I was pleased to pass quickly through and get on my way.
The route from here to Refuge Larribet is spectacular, I had a long lunch at Refuge d'Arremoulit, after passing the exposed but relatively easy Passage d'Orteig. The ascent to Col du Palas is straight forward with a neat, mainly level route to Port du Lavedan, which is best described as a slot in the ridge that you squeeze through.
I had planned to stay at Refuge Larribet in order to supplement my food and to (hopefully) get a decent shower. On arrival there was no warm water and hardly any power. The staff did a sterling job producing a good meal under arduous conditions but the rest of the experience left me hankering after my tent!
The guide suggests the Refuge Wallon as the next stop, I wanted to go further than this so continued higher into the mountains and camped by Lac d'Arrantille. The mist had descended by the time I arrived and it was getting dark, so its was a hurried pitch.
The next day I was rewarded by early morning sunlight slowly permeating the high peaks - a joy to walk through with not another soul in sight. Progress was effortless for most of the day as I passed Vignemarle and on to lunch at Refuge d Bayssellance before the long descent to Gavarnie.
This was in fact my last day of walking as I had decided to push on to Gavarnie to give me a full day to travel to Pau before my morning flight to the UK the day after. I arrived in Gavarnie as night fell, the final approach is by road and the 'cheap' hotels were not very impressive. After walking out of two I found a good one - Le Compostelle - they even had a room with a bath! I have no hesitation in recommending them: www.compostellehotel.com